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Influence of Soccer Parents: Tim Howard

Today we discuss the story of arguably the greatest goalkeeper in U.S Soccer history Tim Howard.
Read the inspriring story on how he used soccer/football to overcome his Tourette's syndrome.

Tim Howard started his career as a goalkeeper in the MLS when he was just in high school.

After a few good seasons with the New York Red Bulls, he was signed to one of the biggest clubs in the world, Manchester United. After a couple of years there, he became a figure at Everton.

This was unprecedented at the time for U.S soccer players. He became a pioneer for the next generation of U.S Soccer. Over the years you would start to see other players like Clint Dempsey, Landon Donovan, and Jozy Altidore all making the move abroad.

Today the U.S National Team has many more players playing in top leagues. Tim Howard was a part of a movement that saw the U.S National Team increase in quality relative to all the other countries in the world.

If you aren't very familiar with him, he is very popular for his heroics in the 2014 World Cup. When the 2014 World Cup rolled around, he was at the height of his powers. He was 35 years old, and the most successful goalkeeper in US history, with 100 caps to his name. For his national team, he was a leader – the boss at the back.

That team made it to the Round Of 16 and lost 2-1 to Belgium. It was a hard-fought game and if some things went the other way, the U.S could've moved on to the Quarter-Finals.

Tim Howard had a great career, but he had to go through challenges and have a strong support system to make all of his dreams come true.

Support System

His mother, Esther, raised him and his brother in an apartment in New Jersey. She worked multiple jobs to keep the family afloat and drove Howard too and from regular soccer practices and tournaments.

"A lot of people saw the amount of time that I spent with my children and the activities and saw that as a sacrifice. ... I never did. I felt that was what needed to be done. -Esther Howard

When he was 10 years old he was diagnosed with Tourette's syndrome. This had an effect on him in school and personal life over the years. Participating in sports helped Tim deal with Tourette's syndrome, keeping him focused on specific goals and helping him avoid distraction. The "syndrome" ended up becoming a strength in soccer according to him.

"On the soccer field, though, my whole world changed.Only one thing remained in sharp focus, its every detail vivid: the ball" -Tim Howard

He used this syndrome and turned it into a strength. He overcame challenges and became one of the best goalkeepers. Now when you think about U.S Soccer one of the first players that come to mind is Tim Howard.

"The best part is seeing my son achieve his dream," "How many people who have children who aspire to something as lofty as playing in the World Cup ... can actually see their child realize that?" -Esther Howard

Seeing your child realize their dreams can be a heart-warming moment. All of the sacrifices, make that moment worth everything. Those moments of sacrifice and support won't go unnoticed.

As an example, Tim himself keeps his biggest inspiration close to his heart. Tattooed on the middle of his chest is "Fekete," his Hungarian mother's maiden name.


How We Can Help:

At FuturElitez Soccer, we emphasize a lot on our player's mindset and attitude towards not only football/soccer but life. Not only do we emphasize this with our players, but we try to put out information for everyone to see. With our podcasts on youtube and our blogs, we try to put out a message to help everyone live their life to the fullest! If you enjoyed this read, it would mean so much to us if you could share this with a friend/family member! Thank you in advance for always reading our blogs on a weekly basis.

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